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Terran Orbital Signs 94K-SF Industrial Lease in Irvine

Small-satellite maker Terran Orbital Corp. is adding a new industrial building totaling nearly 100,000 square feet to its growing base of buildings in Irvine.

The Boca Raton, Fla.-based company (NYSE: LLAP), which counts a roughly $350 million valuation and several Irvine properties as part of its Tyvak Nano-Satellite Systems division, signed a 94,195-square-foot deal last month for the entirety of 4 Goodyear, an industrial building currently under construction near Bake Parkway and the Irvine-Lake Forest city line.

The 5-acre site previously held a 99,384-square-foot light manufacturing building used by Astronics Corp., a New York-based aerospace electronics company. It relocated its Irvine operations to Orlando, Fla. late last year.

The building’s owner, New York-based W.P. Carey Inc., is heading construction on the new facility, expected to deliver in early 2024, at which point the 10-year lease will commence. W.P. Carey has owned the site since 2002, when it purchased the building in a sale-leaseback transaction with Astronics.

Demolition work at the site recently wrapped, according to JLL, whose Steve Wagner, Zach Niles, Louis Tomaselli and Ethan Jacobs brokered the deal.

It’s not yet clear what uses Terran Orbital has planned for the site, but a manufacturing hub for new satellites recently added to the company’s docket is likely.

Including the Goodyear facility, the company counts north of 300,000 square feet in the city, with much of that space used for the manufacturing of small satellites, typically running in the 300-kilogram (660-pound) to 500-kilogram range, for the aerospace and defense industries. It’s been among the fastest-growing local tech firms the past two years, in terms of its real estate footprint in the area.

New Contracts

The new lease reflects the company’s growing order backlog and headcount, as it boosts its operations to meet demand from new customers.

The deal occurred around the same time the small-satellite maker signed its largest order to date: a $2.4 billion order from Rivada Space Networks for 300 Low Earth Orbit, or LEO, spacecraft.

“I believe this is the largest small-satellite deal in the history of small satellites—I don’t know any deal that is larger,” Terran Chief Executive Marc Bell told the Business Journal on Feb. 24.

Rivada Space is a subsidiary of Rivada Networks, a Washington, D.C.-based wireless technology company focused on open-access wholesale and the convergence of terrestrial and satellite communications.

Terran’s Tyvak Nano-Satellite Systems division will design, build, and deploy the satellites for Rivada, with deployment is expected to start in 2025.

Growing Headcount

Bell last month said the satellites will be built in Irvine, where the staff is expected to increase by an as-yet-unspecified number.

That contract came just three months after Terran received a $100 million investment from its largest customer, aerospace and defense contracting giant Lockheed Martin Corp. (NYSE: LMT).

Terran, which aims to produce 1,000 spacecraft per year, employed 312 people in Orange County as of August, according to Business Journal data. That’s up 121% from a year ago, making it one of the fastest-growing tech firms in the area.

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